tv NOW With Alex Wagner MSNBC October 2, 2012 12:00pm-1:00pm EDT
joining me today, msnbc contributor, the effortlessly elegant jonathan capehart of the washington post, karina, editor of "the nation," "new york times" nate silver founder of the influential 538.com and author of "the signal and the noise." why so many predictions fail but some don't. and queen bee of the grio.com, joy reid. everybody gets a nickname today. right now, at this very moment, mitt romney and barack obama are holed up in last-minute debate prep for tomorrow night's main event. speaking to a volunteer nevada yaeds, president obama made it sound like a college cram session minus the no doze and pizza. >> basically they're keeping me indoors all the time. it's a drag. they're making me do my homework. >> governor romney, however, may have twice the work load. he'll have two opponents on stage tomorrow, president obama
and himself. eugene robinson write in "the washington post" -- it prompts to be an epic clash. mitt romney versus mitt romney. oh. and president obama will be there too. this conundrum of what we'll call the paradox of the mittens, dates back to 1994 when senator ted kennedy dropped this debate heat rock. >> on the question of the choice issue, i have supported the row v raid wade, i am pro choice, my opponent is multiple choice. >> so which bubble will the multiple choice candidate fill in on tomorrow night's test? which mitt will triumph on stage. even members of the conservative establishment aren't sure. bill o'reilly conceded mitt romney is a mystery man. >> people don't really know who mitt romney is. the pressure is on the governor. he has to come across as a regular guy, which i'm not sure he can do.
>> true to form romney's policies remain veiled in the same cloud of mystery. his running mate paul ryan refused to say how much their tax cut would cost alleging it would take too long to get into all the math. congressman ryan defended that dodge yesterday. >> i didn't want to get into all the math of this because everybody would start changing the channel. >> and an hour ago, after offering no new specifics on his ticket's tax plan ryan said this -- >> problem is it took me about five minutes to go into all of this with you and you're in a 30-second tv show you can't do it as much. >> on behalf of the television industry, we salute you paul ryan for being so consider ate of the viewers at home. americans still have close to no idea as to what the romney/ryan plan is actually all about. will an 11-minute period of open discussion tomorrow night prove sufficient for governor romney to, quote, get into all the math? perhaps. but with so many of his own policies and open conflict with one another it seems like the most pressing equation for team
romney to solve is whether mitt plus mitt equals one or two. the paradox of the mittens, katrina. >> i mean the romney/ryan campaign so far has been defined by dodge, duck and cover. there's no -- the specifics haven't been there. but you know i think it's wrong to think of mitt romney as his own man. he's a vehicle for a republican party that has become very extremist and a vehicle for a party that also is trying to straddle many different factions and fractions, but extremism has won out. so tomorrow, it's not going to be the lincoln/douglas debates, we'll hear massaged talking points and debates have not been so decisive except when the races are very already tight, kennedy/nixon, gore/bush, but we may well see the narrative of a 1% romney which we've seen reinforcing the 47%.
video and that -- and out of touch with not only his own being who he was, but with ordinary voters, average people in this country. >> i'm -- i'm eager to see how romney deals with follow-up questions. ryan's stuff the contention i don't have enough time, what i'm trying to basically tear apart the american social compact, you know, in some -- if you interpret it in one way but massively overhaul this nation's sort of tax plan, but i don't have time to get into the details, president obama's going to press him on this. >> well, right. well, one, you a situation where, you know, mitt romney apparently has all these memorized zingers that he's going to unleash on the president tomorrow, but then, what you don't hear folks talk about is, once the zinger has been thrown out there, then what? so he lays out and says energy independence, well when the follow-up question comes, what's the there there, what are the specifics?
paul ryan, god bless chris wallace for pressing as much as he could on paul ryan, no we've got all the time in the world, explain, explain. paul ryan didn't want to do it in a format that where chris wallace would have given him all the time in the world to get into the specifics. mitt romney won't have that much time, but if he doesn't go into specifics, all the complaints that we've been hearing from the american people, but also from republicans about the lack of specificity in this campaign, i think will get louder. >> nate, you're a man of numbers. a prognosticator, what is your bet? george will writes romney is behind so on wednesday night it might be risky for romney not to take risks. which is a lot of risk in one sentence. do you think romg will go out there? i mean given his behavior thus far? >> historically the defirst debate is the first time a challenger has a chance to stance on stage on a level playing for field for a couple hours with the incumbent president and it's been the challenger's best debate. so just by showing up, you would
think that romney's a slight favorite right now. we have seen obama recently in a higher position than he's been in all year, maybe higher than you would expect based on where the economy is. so i do think romney should have a tail wind at the same time the stuff we're mentioning where he also has tried to avoid articulating where his positions are on a lot of issues, a lot that is common sense but if you take positions further away from the center that damages you and he's not done a lot of running to the center at all in this campaign. that's unusual and he'll be proebds for more detail during the debate. >> the american public or people are crying out for the etch a sketch moment. joy, in terms of managing expectations, the guy that has managed them in his own fashion is chris christie. i want to play a little chris christie sound doubling down on the fact that this is a big deal tomorrow night for mitt romney. >> this whole race will be turned upside down thursday morning. >> what are you doing, christie? for god sake's if romney fails to meet those heavy expectations
he's going to lose the general election and the republican party and that's going to leave open 26 -- oh. >> setting aside for 2016, part of me applauds the fact that christie is saying what everybody believes which it's a proving ground for mitt romney. and some part of me believes maybe it would be good if mitt romney said you know what, tomorrow night is a big deal and there going to be some wins and losses and i want to deliver a powerful and specific message about what i want to offer and the path forward. >> you have to be able to do that. i think all that chris christie, all that was missing from the interview was a christie 2016 t-shirt. he's the worst surrogate ever. >> or maybe the best. >> i don't know. i think it is true that the stakes are higher for mitt romney. what the president wants is stays is. if the race remains as it is now he's in good shape. romney needs a big moment and
the risk is he'll push too hard to get it. he'll have the zingers in mind understanding he needs it to be a big moment he'll try too hard and come across poorly to the audience. your earlier discussion the few people who say they're undecided what they say they want, we make fun of the undecided, but to a person they almost say they want is specifics. i need to know what this person is going to do. the pressure is on romney are multiple. he has to give enough specifics so undecideds can understand his plans without really telling people what he wants to do because it's unpopular? >> in another life i would like to come back as an undecided voter from ohio. >> that's it. >> the bottom line is, that the lack of specificity offered by romney and ryan has a lot to do with an understanding their positions certainly on medicare and voucherization of medicare are not popular. >> exactly. >> so that's where you see the duck and cover. and as for chris christie, you know, he did a good job at the
convention applying for 2016, but i do think in terms of questions, i'd like to hear tomorrow and i think this relates to the economy, i thought chris christie on the sunday shows was tough in repudiatg todd akin and his comment about what is legitimate rape. >> right. >> i would like to hear mitt romney, paul ryan and every member of this republican party respond to that question and i believe that relates to the economics of this campaign, because it relates to women's rights, their health, and their economic security. >> yes. i mean it will be difficult for mitt romney given the fact that his running mate cosponsored the personhood stuff and the narrow definition of rape. >> forcible rape. >> what the president has to answer politico has ten quotes that will come back to haunt obama. among them, washington is broken. my whole campaign has been premised from the start on the idea that we have to fundamentally change how washington works. jonathan, how much of a liability is that quote for the president? >> it's a liability because he had this, you know, wonderful,
you know, pie in the sky view of coming to washington and changing things and then, you know, campaigning meant governing right quick. but you know i go back to something i say every time, that people have to remember that, you know, thanks to two books, one by robert draper the other by michael grinwald we know between the time obama was elected president and the time he was inaugurated, republicans met at least twice, the leadership met at least twice to hatch a plan to just, you know, obstruct the incoming president no matter what. even though the economy was falling off the cliff it was all about obstruct him in 2009, to take back the house or both chambers in 2010 and win the white house in 2012. no matter what they didn't want president obama to succeed. they saw it as a success for him rather than a success for the country. >> i questiguess the question t have or quotes that will haunt him, the closing of guantanamo, comprehensive immigration
reform. the problem with all that is the answer is republican stood in the way, didn't want to play ball, which you could say a fair assessment but does it sound after you have the same answer to each question, does it sound whiney? >> i think because the american people went through it with the president and watched the agonizing process on health care it does resonate. the closing of gitmo, the vote was like 96-4. democrats didn't go along with it. if you want a better president elect a better congress. that is the real lesson of the last two years. >> certainly the questions will be many. the answers perhaps few. we'll see. coming up, the numbers game. electorally speaking not all roads lead to 270 but there are different routes to get there. some are super highways and others are more scenic. as chuck todd mapped out last week. >> florida still matters big. if the president wins it it's check mate. no path without florida. go for these scenarios, if he's going to crede ohio, and that's
what's gone on the move of ohio where romney cannot seem to connect with white working-class voters, he's doing the bus trip, but the move of ohio that suddenly means he has to win florida and virginia. >> we will compare governor romney's narrow path with president obama's increasingly widening lane next on "now." [ female announcer ] ready for a taste of what's hot?
electoral votes, just 27 shy of the 270 needed to win. romney meanwhile can bank on 191, that leaves 104 votes up for grabs in just eight states, florida, nevada, colorado, wisconsin, ohio, virginia, north carolina, and new hampshire. to win romney would need to win a majority of those battlegrounds and according to recent opinion polls in those states the president is leading or statistically tied with romney, one reason why nate silver's trustee ma mathematical models are predicting november 6th could be a good night for team op puts the president's chances of winning at 86% and mitt romney's a meager 14%. insert romney frowny face here. it is really this buttoned up? i want to go deep into the nate silver mind chamber on this block. it is -- i mean that's a pretty big gap there, 86 to 14. let's speak electorally here.
>> sure. >> you're pegging obama with 320.1 electoral votes, up nearly 11 in the last couple weeks or last week, romney at 217.9. 320 is a lot of electoral votes. that would be i think a mandate. >> so -- well i don't know if i would call ate mandate necessarily. if you have a small advantage in the popular vote and then if the swing states behave accordingly, obama's polling is stronger in the swing states it would look impressive on the map, it would be a below average margin for the incumbent. romney does have his work cut out for him. of the six we talked about before, the two biggest problems are probably ohio where he hasn't led in the poll by a long time and, in fact, his best polls put him down three or four points. the worst put him down nine or ten points. ohio is a huge problem for romney right now and wisconsin where he seemed to get a bounce often due when he named paul ryan has faded and see how
single digits, a couple double-digit leads for obama in that state as well. without those two romney would have to sweep almost everything else including nevada, iowa, virginia, florida, you know it's possible but he's going to need a shift back in the overall climate, too much work for him just to win all these coin flips in a row if he drops ohio and wisconsin. >> statistically the case that no republican has won the presidential without ohio? >> in 70 years. >> why it's special. ohio is normally a bit republican leaning relative to the consensus. >> yes. >> so a democrat usually has more paths without ohio than republican would. ohio's population is not growing as fast so it has fewer electoral votes than it used to. some paths available to romney without ohio but it's not how you would draw it up if you're in boston trying to plan for how would your election night go. >> you actually isolate the tipping point states and say ohio has a 36.5 chance of
providing the decisive electoral vote and we talked about that. wisconsin you put at a 9.8% chance of providing the decisive vote. that is interesting to me given everything that's gone on in wisconsin. talking in the break about the scott walker factor, labor discussion. people that voted to keep scott walker in office that are supporters of the president. the other complicating factor paul ryan is from wisconsin. >> right. if you look at the detail of the polls there, then paul ryan will give romney a boost maybe in his district in downstate wisconsin but maybe not statewide so much where paul ryan is not a statewide office holder. he is from the house. he's not going to be that much more familiar to a voter say in green bay, which is outside of his district, than to a voter in richmond, virginia, or something, right? it's that local connection you have that seems to help and it's a very local connection for paul ryan. but wisconsin is a state that can be quite volatile. although in those -- in the same exit polls that had correctly --
that had walker winning the recall, the same voters majority said i want to vote for obama anyway. and so wisconsin, he won it by 14 or 15 points some large margin in 2008. you can have the tide shift against you and have a big cushion there. >> wisconsin is this wonderful state, the state of robert, the great populist, joe mccarthy, not to draw connections between paul ryan and joe mccarthy and mitt romney. it was the recall that people didn't understand or feel was the right expression of protest against scott walker but the great occupation of the state house in support of workers, teachers, nurses, police, of wisconsin i think is going to play a role in this election where people came out to support a different kind of politics. >> i think we're reminding of the fairness of the american electorate, the fact they have more nuanced views than we ascribe them as having. in your book "the signal and the noise" you talk about the difference between hedgehogs,
people who know one big thing and foxes, people who are more nuanced and know many things. i'm probably a hedge hog just declaring things you say hedge hogs tend to be wrong, foxies tend to be right. give us your fox hedge hog analysis of the campaigns. i would say team obama tend to be fox like they're data given. where would you square the romney folks? >> i think the romney folks are maybe more date ta driven than they let on potentially. if you're trying to apply points view of it can become problem at fick they conflict. the need to please the republican base and a primary where he had to do work to win certainly. you have to play the independent voters and center of the electorate. the wedge issues on which republicans did well like immigration, now it's democrats who want to talk about them more or women's issues in general or
even gay marriage, to an extent. the fact that romney kind of -- here how he's being more of a hedge hog, banking on the economy so bad obama will get elected out of office no matter what. it will work and might get you to 45 or 47% or 48% of the vote but seems like he's been stuck there even after his convention he was down or not down but only tied with obama, which is hard for a candidate to win he can't pull ahead. >> i think we expected more fox like behavior we thought there was going to be more tailored message to hispanics or women, losing by double digits and yet, hedge hog he remains. nate silver, thank you again. political forecaster extraordinary and now author of the signal and the noise. almost a foxnerian call to arms. an enlightening book. pot meet kettle. republicans sound the alarm over
potential voter fraud but the most glaring scandal of the election cycle is the firm that was fired by the republican party for questionable registration practices. sound familiar? reverend al sharpton thinks so. >> this is exactly what started the phony acorn scandal. phony voter registrations. the same thing. so where's the right wing outrage today? they were horrified by those acorn employees in 2008. so guys what do you have to say? >> we're going to rev up our engines when the great reverend al joins the panel, next. families handmade wooden water tanks on hundreds of new york
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top state republican said would help mitt romney win pennsylvania. most republicans usually don't admit as much, prefrg to frame their efforts around, quote, preventing voter fraud. but in a twist it appears that republicans may be the ones responsible for all the suspicious activity this year. last week the rnc fired a group called strategic allied consulting after accused of submitting fraudulent voter registration forms. if the republican party was shocked, perhaps it shouldn't have been. the firm is owned by a gop operative named nathan stroul sproul whose voter activities were investigated by the justice department though no charges filed. in a sign of people who want to legitimately exercise their right to vote, voters in ohio slept on the street overnight to be the first to cast their ballots when early voting began this morning in that state. joining us now is the host of politics nation, here on msnbc, the one, the only, reverend al sharpton. great to see you. >> glad to be here.
>> let's talk about the pennsylvania decision. there seems to be an increasing tide of decisions that would favor of argument that this voter i.d. stuff is actually just a fraud, perpetrated by the republican party to disenfranchise voters. what did you make of the judge's decision in pa? >> i think it was a step in the right direction. it's not closing the door but he clearly said with those of us that raised this issue almost a year ago, that he did not see how you can do this without disenfranchising voters. and this has been the argument we've had all along. no evidence of widespread fraud. the net impact is much more negative, risking the institute said up to 5 million voters and you can't show us what is avoiding or preventing and that's what this decision in pennsylvania did say today, it did leave the door open so we have to keep fighting and the supreme court in this session may review it.
so we're not out of the woods. we just escaped this round. >> i think the irony is so thick you can almost cut it when you hear the story of nathan sproul who is committing voter fraud, a young woman who worked for sproul caught on camera saying she was only registering republicans. now you know there are a lot of folks in the gop that try to defend this movement to have, you know, curb early voter registration and voter -- force voters to show i.d. at the polls because they put the good of the country first. but when you see this kind of naked partisanship i think it totally undermines any argument that the republicans are doing this for anything other than party benefit? >> i think the real problem i had is, the young lady was caught on tape, she says we're here for romney, they wouldn't even register people unless they said they were for romney. but this is exa actually the thing they went after acorn about. not one major republican has come out. sproul has been suggested to be
involved with fraud before. now what is interesting, alex, about this particular company, it was formed in june of this year, yet they gave them a $3 million contract. how do you give a $3 million contract to a brand new company, other than you knew the people involved, which was sproul, and sproul has a very shady background to say the least. clearly they were caught, we're in the seeing the outrage that we saw with acorn who was forced out of business and in the end, the leadership of acorn was found to have done nothing. >> the reverend is right. where is the outrage. acorn is a missing part of this campaign, played a major role in poor minority communities in registering and movement building. but i think we have to be careful. this is an outrage and every republican should be asked what he or she thinks of it. let us not lose sight of the bigger picture. we have republican governors in major states enacting suppression of the vote. i mean, we should be at a moment
in this country's history where this is not left/right issue. it's about encouraging people to vote, not suppressing the vote, it should be voters in, money out and we are not seeing that and that is the scandal and the shame of this election. >> the huge irony and i'm glad this came out because nathan sproul was accused in florida in 2004 of doing something that is worse than fake mickey mouse people being registered they were shredding democratic registrations so people would show up at the polls thinking they were registered and couldn't vote. that is actually active voter suppression. the irony of all of this the only kinds of active fraud we've been able to uncover are things like the nathan sproul scandal and absentee ballot fraud which is going on in florida where people with alzheimer's disease are showing up with their absentee ballots filled out for them by these boliteros in voting. that's the only not regulated by the legislatures. they're leaving absentee voter
fraud out completely. >> the sort of what this means for the country at large. and we know that because of the sproul scandal, amid fraud allegations the gop has ended voter registration their voter registration push in colorado, nevada, virginia, north carolina and florida. that's not a good thing for country for people not be registering to vote. >> it is a mostly white republican party today. looking out at a country that is changing. the demographic shifts in this country are extraordinary. and what is their means and mechanisms of control? money. and voter suppression. and they're going to see this as their last hurrah this election, do whatever they can to win. >> i guess, though, you know, in defense of a two-party system, i just think -- someone in the republican party has to look at this and say this is not a strategy for our party. >> the thing that scares me the most dealing with katrina's point is that you're not even hearing loud moderate republican
voices saying wait a minute, putting all this aside, let's deal with the fact that we represent democratic principles all over the world and we're suppressing votes at home. when we started with nation network tour and started the rallies and marches a man told me in orlando, florida, he says, i'm 85, i cannot drive, i don't need a driver's license, that's why i don't have photo i.d. i'm not going anywhere so i don't need a passport, 27 miles to get i.d. and i don't have the money when i get there because of fixed income. that's why we started calling it a poll tax. 2012, people can't afford to get i.d. to go vote. that should be an outrage. in the days before my time, less known your time -- >> we're just babies around you. >> thank you. >> that's why i come on, to get my wag on. >> that's it. cut that tape. >> but i think that the issue is, before my time, e eliberal
republicans that stood up for civil rights in the '60s, where are those voices in the republican party it today saying i don't agree with a lot of the things, economic policies but democracy should be nonnegotiable. >> where you know what, this gets to a larger issue. where is the leadership, where is the courage within the republican party. i mean we were talking about this at the time of the birther nonsense, where were the grownups and the republican parties saying to its own members look, you are not only questioning the legitimacy of president obama, but you're questioning the legitimacy of the president of the united states. based on nothing. based on a lie and based on a racist lie and not one person would step forward, any kind of stature within the republican party and say enough. to your point, there's no outrage over this because, you know, quite frankly i think the republican leadership is being held hostage by sort of the last gapses of the far right wing.
>> the fear based decision making. >> and shouldn't mitt romney be that person? all the things you all said, the person who should be leading on this and who would do himself a world of good if he did stand up would be mitt romney. >> he's not a leader. i think we have seen he will say anything and do anything in order to win. >> and it is distressing that one of our major parties is doubling down on efforts to take away the right to vote from americans. >> right. >> it is not a good american story. thank you to reverend al sharpton. >> thank you. >> powerful -- >> thank you for getting my wag on. >> yes. nothing makes me happier than that and the grio's joy reid. thank you both. catch the rev tonight and every night on "politics nation" at 6:00 prm eastern time. coming up independence day or night in massachusetts. elizabeth warren and scott brown tried to dodge partisanship at every turn yet somehow the candidates got chippy. we will dissect and discuss
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what's in your wallet? [ cheers and applause ] after the break, senator scott brown professes his intig nags during his debate with elizabeth warren but the tactic didn't go down so well. >> if you're going to comment on my record i would have you refer to it. >> can we just -- >> if this is going to be -- >> go ahead. >> i'm not a student in your classroom. please let me respond, okay. thank you. >> we will revisit the best and worst from last night and look at the state of the race when the sage of capital hill my celebrity topple ganger luke russert joins us next. one is for a clean, wedomestic energy future that puts us in control. our abundant natural gas is already saving us money, producing cleaner electricity, putting us to work here in america and supporting wind and solar.
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the boston herald and moderated by our own david gregory. the two candidates clashed on topics ranging from the economy and taxes to warren's native american heritage and whether or not brown would be a stooge for a future president mitt romney. >> you support president romney -- excuse me governor romney for president, i assume? >> when it comes to dealing with the economic issues yes, absolutely. we're two different people. i'm from -- >> you would be a reliable alley when it came to his economic plan. >> on his economic plan, you said there's nobody better or i would trust more than governor romney. >> i would like to read the bills as i do. a lot of people don't read the bills down there. see how they affect massachusetts, our country and debt and deficit and vote. i am a reliable vote for the bill. >> theme of the evening, independence good, partisanship bad. >> vote about 50% with my party and 50% with the democratic party and that's a lot different than what professor warren would do to be in lock step. >> when senator brown talks here
in massachusetts about how very bipartisan he is and end pent he is he's not saying the same thing when he goes around the country raising money in this senate campaign. >> aliens watching the debate could be forgiven for voting in lock step is a criminal offense. warren accused brown of consistently voting with republican leadership to block jobs bills put forward by the president while brown said compromise was a foreign concept to the ultraliberal warren. with all political events this evening not without its gaffes. >> can you name some republicans in the senate today that you are able to work with on big, substantive issues that the country face this is. >> probably richard lugar would come to mind. >> he's not going to be there. >> who else could you name, senator? >> that is a model. >> who is your model supreme court justice? >> let me see here. that's a great question. i think justice scalia is a very
good judge, justice kennedy. justice kennedy is, obviously, very good and justice roberts. they are -- justice societomayo- >> scalia and sotomayor don't exactly -- >> that's the beauty of being end pent. >> joining us from capitol hill, my celebrity doppelganger the sage luke russert. some interesting high jinx last night there on the part of both scott brown and elizabeth warren. the fact that he did not want to be associated very clearly did not want to be associated with mitt romney was interesting and definitely trying to put sun light between him and the obstructionist congress he is a part of. what did you make of it? >> absolutely. that's one of his keys to victory to try to get that crossover vote, folks who will vote for barack obama for president but do not want to send an all democratic ticket to washington. but when he's saying well, he
said to mitch mcconnell he wasn't satisfied with the direction in which congress was going and would he vote for him, mitch mcconnell is the only republican on the ballot for senate majority leader so if you don't vote for him you're going to be excommunicated. he has to go with mitch mcconnell. i found that fascinating. the supreme court justice answer, scalia known to be a favorite amongst republicans, prime probably not going to do well with independent in the state of massachusetts. the most important number here is that amount of folks undecided in the state, 18%, and why is it that high this close to the election? elizabeth warren has seen a surge in the poll, a lot of democrats have warmed up to her, fired to get behind her. went to college in massachusetts, spent a ton of time there, i was making phone calls today to folks i know are independents and what is it about elizabeth warren are you still hung up that you will not support her even if you support the president and the answer comes down to personality. just this idea we don't necessarily like her.
a likability gap between her and brown. it's up to democra these next few weeks to go at scott brown's temperame temperament. you will hear a lot in the next few days about his comment i'm not some sort of student in your class, was that coming across as too harmful. and you'll start to see is scott brown really as nice a guy as he says he is when he's going to join the gop out of the comfort of a six-year senate term and go at them, the stuff against violence against women act, not moving quick enough on the dream act, things of that nature. >> indeed. >> no one got ahead last night. >> the no more mr. nice guy thing is maybe going to be an issue for scott brown. jonathan, as luke said, brown leads warren 58 to 27% on most likable, but warren wins 47 to 42% on helps working people. that to me is interesting. they don't like her as much but they think her heart is in the right place and values. >> here you have the president is likable, and they also -- and
the people also think well things are bad, but he's the one who cares about them. how she's able -- how she -- elizabeth warren will bring the personality and she cares about us thing together will be really tough because as we've seen, the reason why pollsters ask these questions and the reason why we focus on the likability question, is because it matters. >> what does likability mean? does it mean scott brown has a pick-up truck? i mean -- i mean it is -- to me, i understand that in massachusetts, there seems to be also a kind of predisposition against electing women to positions of power. >> it's a tough thing for women in massachusetts. >> scott brown has worked owe doesly and esid wasly to attach this label to elizabeth warren to the professor which should be a good tag, but she is someone who's teaching the democrats how to fight for working people, spoken about being on your side, and i think it's worth noting that for tune magazine called
scott brown wall street's favorite center and he's taken money from financial industries than any member of congress. how you communicated jonathan was suggesting does become important. the key thing is a vote for scott brown is one step toward a republican senate. what does that mean. imhoff head of the environment committee a climate denialist and a republican senate which could dismantle the social contract and more. >> luke, seems like scott brown has a case of the mitts that he has to trade this difficult line between conservatives, the skoo ska leah question to me was really -- the answer was weird. he seemed to rattle off the names of supreme court justices as if to prove that he knew that they sat on the bench, but wants to appear as an independent but look, mitch mcconnell is going to be his boss if he gets re-elected, a "boston globe" poll says most voters
think scott blown brown is heavily influenced by the gop, 41% think he's sometimes influenced and 37% think he's independent. >> goes back to how he got elected. originally his campaign in 2010 was the democratic -- not the democratic seat, not the kennedy seat, the people's seat. that appealed to people in massachusetts who wanted to shake things up as you saw in '06 and 2010 and around the country. what his issues will be how much will he be tied to mitch mcconnell in the gop leadership. when he came here in 2010 he was the pivotal vote against health care, scott brown 41, he's trying to go away interest that. it's difficult to gauge. six-year term will he be as independent as he says he will be. that will be the question that massachusetts voters end up making and how they decide on that will determine if scott brown is victorious. >> i always think of you as the hardest working man in congress but it's proven by the fact that
is an empty hallway sir and your voice is echoing in surround sound because nobody is working on capitol hill. >> someone has to work. nancy pelosi is here holing a hearing about medicare so there is something for us capitol hill reporters to do. >> nbc's luke russert, thank you as always. >> take care. >> coming up, some republicans particularly newt gingrich like to call barack obama the food stamp president. wonder if they would characterize jpmorgan as the food stamp bank. turns out the company is making millions on the so-called welfare state. we will explain next in what now. [ female announcer ] ready for a taste of what's hot? check out the latest collection of snacks from lean cuisine. creamy spinach artichoke dip, crispy garlic chicken spring rolls. they're this season's must-have accessory. lean cuisine. be culinary chic.
has been making a fortune off our welfare system thanks to a law that require all states to switch from food stamps to debit cards. a contract totaled over $126 million for jp morgan in new york city. >> jpmorgan the welfare queen. next time one of the candidates do racism about entitlements point them to this story. >> the zirng of the day, jonathan capehart. >> that's what i was going to say. >> ditto. >> the connection between sort of the corporate profit and government programs, is not a dot that's often connected. >> as you were saying during the break the cards do serve a purpose. they bring a level of dignity and strip away the stigma of being on government assistance. >> it's an interesting story that we will be following. >> and profitable clearly. >> we have to clear it there. thank you to jonathan and katrina. that is all for now. "andrea mitchell reports" is next.
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right now on "andrea mitchell reports" the candidates hold their last rehearsals before the showdown in denver. mitt romney picks up an endorsement from john elway. people want to know who's going to win and score the punches. it's not winning or losing or the people themselves, the president or myself, it's about something bigger than that, these debates are an opportunity for each of us to describe the pathway forward for america that we would choose. >> president obama rehearsing in suburban las vegas took a break to deliver pizzas to his local campaign workers. >> it's very nice, you know. we're -- you know, although basically they're keeping me indoors all the time, it's a drag. they're making me do my homework. >> and how much will the debate influence voters. we have our exclusive sneak peek at our new nbc news/"wall street journal" pol